In a Halloween upset that no one saw coming, the New York Jets didn't just put a scare into the Bengals, they took them to the graveyard and buried them. 

With Zach Wilson out, the Jets were a popular pick to get blown out this week -- the oddsmakers had them pegged as a double-digit underdog -- but backup quarterback Mike White had other ideas. In one of the most impressive performances ever by a QB making his first start, White threw for 405 yards and three touchdowns as the Jets stunned the Bengals 34-31. 

White has been in the NFL since 2018, but he didn't make his first start until Sunday and he definitely made the most of it. The Jets quarterback had the Bengals' defense on its heels all day as he completed his first 11 passes. White showed off uncanny accuracy -- he completed 82.2% of his passes -- and the only two mistakes he made weren't his fault as both his interceptions bounced off the receiver he was targeting. 

The backup quarterback showed off a toughness that the Jets haven't really shown this season. After leaving the game to enter concussion protocol in the third quarter, he ended up returning to the game and he might have been even better: He completed 11 of his final 13 passes for for 146 yards and two touchdowns. 

White's biggest throw, which ended up being the game-winner, was emblematic of his day: He stayed patient in the pocket and waited for his receiver to break open. The receiver in this case ended up being tight end Tyler Kroft, who caught a 13-yard touchdown to give the Jets the lead for good. 

White capped off the TD by CATCHING the two-point conversion on a throw from Jamison Crowder

Basically, there was nothing White didn't do against the Bengals. Besides throwing and catching passes, he also made a great defensive play that might have saved the game for the Jets. After throwing an interception to Bengals safety Jessie Bates in the first quarter, it looked like Bates might return it for a TD, but as you can see below, White ran him down and forced the play back inside, which allowed Elijah Moore (the No. 8 referenced in the tweet below) to make the tackle at the Jets' 1-yard line. 

That ended up being a huge tackle because the Bengals ended up coming away with zero points on the drive because the Jets' defense would make a goal-line stand at the 1-yard line. 

Overall, White's 405-yard day makes him the first QB in NFL history to hit the 400-yard mark while also throwing at least three touchdowns in his first start. He's also just the second quarterback since 1985 to win a game in his first start after trailing by double digits with less than five minutes left to play (Steve Young is the other). 

One other thing that made White's debut so impressive was that he did it against a Bengals defense that was surrendering just 251.3 yards per game over the past four weeks. 

The Jets might not be headed for the playoffs this year, but they've proven that you absolutely can't afford to overlook them. With wins over the Bengals and Titans this season, it won't be surprising if we see the Jets pull off a few more upsets before the end of the year.  

Alright, let's get to the grades for every game from Week 8. If you're looking for a deeper dive on Green Bay's wild 24-21 win over the Cardinals that was played on Thursday, be sure to click here

N.Y. Jets 34-31 over Cincinnati

Apparently, the Bengals decided to dress up as last year's Bengals for Halloween. The Bengals' offense came out and played a disastrous first half with only 119 yards. They probably would have been down by double-digits at the half if not for three first-half turnovers from the Jets that led to 10 points. It could have led to 17 points, but the Bengals came away with zero points on a drive that started at New York's 1-yard line after a Jessie Bates interception. As bad as the offense was in the first half, the defense might have been worse in the second half. The Bengals ended up surrendering more than 500 yards of offense to a quarterback who had never started an NFL game before Sunday. 
Mike White might have been the star of this game for the Jets, but he wouldn't have been able to have his big day if not for an impressive performance from New York's receiving corps. The Jets group of receivers caught nearly everything thrown their way. Michael Carter, Jamison Crowder, Ty Johnson and Elijah Moore all caught at least five passes. Carter was also impressive on the ground as the rookie running back averaged 5.13 yards per carry (77 yards on 15 carries). Although the Jets' defense didn't shut down the Bengals, it did make plenty of big plays. Not only did it sack Joe Burrow three times, but Shaq Lawson came up with a fourth-quarter interception that helped set up White's game-winning touchdown pass. 

Kansas City 20-17 over N.Y. Giants (Monday)

In a game where the Giants were a 10.5-point underdog, they were able to keep it close thanks to an inspired effort from a defense that gave Patrick Mahomes fits all nights. Not only did the Giants force two turnovers, but they had Mahomes on the run for most of the night. The Chiefs quarterback was sacked twice and had an erratic night (19 incompletions) thanks in large part to the pressure that the Giants were able bring. Offensively, the Giants made some big plays, but they also got a disastrous interception from Daniel Jones in the first quarter that gave the Chiefs the ball at New York's 13-yard line. This is game the Giants might have been able to win with better coaching: They botched their final offensive possession of the first half and their final offensive possession of the game. 
It's a good thing for the Chiefs that ugly wins count the same as regular wins because this one was ugly. The Chiefs offense has been making uncharacteristic mistakes all season and those continued on Monday with a Patrick Mahomes interception off deflected pass and a Travis Kelce fumble. Fortunately for the Chiefs, their defense came through one of its best games of the season: They made several big plays including a first quarter interception and a late sack of Daniel Jones on New York's final offensive drive. It wasn't pretty, but at this point, the Chiefs will take any win they can get. 

L.A. Rams 38-22 over Houston

This was a game where the Rams played nearly perfect on both offense and defense. The score at one point was 38-0 before the Texans piled on some points in garbage time. Offensively, Cooper Kupp continues to be the one receiver in the NFL who no one can cover. The Rams receiver caught seven passes for 115 yards and 1 TD.  Defensively, Texans QB Davis Mills had no chance against a Rams defensive front that had him on the run for nearly the entire game. The Rams ended up sacking Mills a total of five times with 1.5 of those coming from Aaron Donald
Since the Texans seem to get a bad grade very week, we're going to focus on the positive here: Defensively, they stopped the Rams on a fourth-down play from the Houston 3-yard line in the first quarter. Offensively, Brandin Cooks caught a 45-yard TD. On special teams, they recovered an onside kick and eventually turned that into a fourth-quarter TD. Other than that, everything else was a disaster for them on Sunday.  

Buffalo 26-11 over Miami

Although the scoreboard says blowout, this game was close going into the fourth quarter and that's mainly because the Dolphins' defense held Buffalo's high-powered offense to just 10 points through the game's first three quarters. Unfortunately for the Dolphins, their offense was nowhere near as good as their defense. They made way too many mistakes (one fumble, one interception) and they couldn't come up with any big drives in the second half (They went three-and-out on their first three possessions of the half). With just two days to go until the trade deadline, Tua Tagovailoa didn't do much to help his cause if the Dolphins are still giving serious though about making a deal for Deshaun Watson
In a showing that was fitting for Halloween, the Bills' offense didn't look alive in the first half (123 yards), but then it rose from the dead in the second half. The Bills won this game with a 23-point explosion over the game's final two quarters with Josh Allen doing most of the dirty work. Allen did his damage both through the air (249 passing yards, two touchdowns) and on the ground (55 yards, 1 TD). The Bills survived the bad first half from their offense because the Dolphins simply couldn't move the ball on a Buffalo defense that dominated the game.  

Carolina 19-13 over Atlanta

Stephon Gilmore's first game with the Panthers must have inspired Carolina's secondary, because they absolutely shut down Matt Ryan. Not only did the Panthers hold Ryan to just 146 yards, but Gilmore also iced the win when he picked off the Falcons QB with under two minutes left to play. That was one of two interceptions in the game for Carolina. The Panthers didn't do much on offense, but they did get a solid game from Chuba Hubbard who bounced back to rush for 82 yards and a TD after fumbling on the first play of the game. Zane Gonzalez also played a big part in the win by drilling four field goals, including two from more than 50 yards (51, 57). 
With Calvin Ridley out due to personal reasons, Atlanta's offense limped through this game. The Falcons totaled just 213 yards, which was the team's second-lowest total since Ryan became the starting QB in 2008. The Falcons were plagued by bad mistakes, including two interceptions by Ryan and a missed 45-yard field goal by Younghoe Koo that would have given the Falcons the lead in the fourth quarter. It was Koo's first missed kick of the season. 

Pittsburgh 15-10 over Cleveland

Pittsburgh got a herculean effort by its defense, who held the Browns to their lowest scoring output since Week 10 of the 2020 season. Cam Heyward and T.J. Watt combined to make one of the unit's first big plays when they tackled Nick Chubb for a 1-yard loss on fourth-and-1 on the first drive of the second quarter. Offensively, the Steelers achieved near perfect offensive balance with 37 pass attempts and 32 running plays. They received a gritty effort from Ben Roethlisberger, who completed 64.7% of his throws with 266 yards. The Steelers would have had a perfect grade if not for the fake field goal play call that ultimately led to Chris Boswell's injury late in the first half.
The Browns' offense should take the brunt of the blame for Sunday's loss. The unit was just 3 of 10 on third down, as the Browns controlled the ball for just 17 minutes during the game's final three quarters after having possession for over 11 minutes in the first half. Cleveland failed to take advantage of their formidable rushing attack, as the Browns finished with 96 yards on just 23 carries. Cleveland's defense allowed just 15 points, but it failed to come up with big plays when needed most.

Steelers-Browns grades by Bryan DeArdo (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

San Francisco 33-22 over Chicago

They let Justin Fields and the Bears do most of what they wanted early on, so this wasn't a dominant performance by any means. But they still got pressure up front when it mattered most, and more importantly, their offense finally looked like a functional unit. Jimmy Garoppolo was so-so out of the gate but finished strong with nice touch and two (!) rushing scores. Elijah Mitchell only found daylight when he touched the ball. And Deebo Samuel was an absolute game-changer with his turbo jets. The losing streak is over!
Yes, a loss is a loss, but in the grand scheme of things, Sunday was promising. The defense had almost zero pass rush without Khalil Mack and struggled mightily to contain Samuel all day, but what matters more than the development of the star QB? They got that, with Justin Fields looking like the best signal-caller of the game for a large stretch of action. Ironically it came without Matt Nagy on the sidelines, but still, Fields' dual-threat talent nearly allowed Chi-Town to steal the home upset.

49ers-Bears grades by Cody Benjamin (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Philadelphia 44-6 over Detroit

This was a game very few saw coming from the Eagles, based on how they played the last two weeks. Philadelphia rushed for 236 yards in the victory, once Nick Sirianni actually committed to the ground game -- without Miles Sanders available. Boston Scott and Jordan Howard each rushed for two touchdowns in the win, as the Eagles rushed for four touchdowns in a game for the first time since December 2013. The usually pass-happy Eagles limited Jalen Hurts to just 14 attempts, an excellent sign for a team that needed to balance the offense out for its young quarterback. The first-team defense didn't allow a point on eight possessions and sacked Jared Goff six times. This was Philadelphia's best game of the year -- period.
What a disaster for Detroit in a game that was certainly winnable. The Lions' defense was putrid, allowing the Eagles to just pound them on the ground to the tune of 236 yards and 5.1 yards per carry. This with Boston Scott -- who had just seven carries all year heading into the game -- and Jordan Howard, who was just called up from the practice squad. Detroit's offensive line was dominated in the trenches by an Eagles defense that had just 12 sacks in seven games, forcing Jared Goff to rush throws early and put the game out of hand. It's hard to find what the Lions do well right now -- or if they can even win a game in 2021. Dan Campbell will have to question his team after this one, as the Lions looked disinterested at times. The losses are frustrating at this point, especially for a Detroit team that is 0-8 for the first time since 2008.  

Eagles-Lions grades by Jeff Kerr (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Tennessee 34-31 (OT) over Indianapolis 

Tennessee was able to sweep the season series against Indy on Sunday, but it was not a perfect outing. Ryan Tannehill had two interceptions he would like to have back and the secondary looked lost on virtually every deep ball Carson Wentz threw. Still, it speaks to the resiliency of this team that it was able to leave Lucas Oil Stadium with a victory. The Titans quickly went down 14-0 in the first quarter, but the offense was able to rally in the second quarter to erase the deficit. And after committing the defensive pass interference penalty which ultimately sent the game to overtime, Kevin Byard picked off Wentz in the extra period to set Tennessee up with a game-winning field goal. This Titans team keeps winning. That's four straight now.
The Colts had their chances to win this game. They quickly jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter and picked off Tannehill twice, but that wasn't enough. Even when they got the ball first in overtime, they punted after three plays. Then, Wentz threw his second interception of the game on Indy's second possession of the extra period, which set up the Titans with great field position to kick a game-winning field goal. The season isn't technically over, but the Colts needed a win on Sunday to keep pace in the AFC South.

Titans-Colts grades by Jordan Dajani (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Seattle 31-7 over Jacksonville

It's fitting that this game was played on Halloween because it was scary how badly the Jaguars played. If they didn't hit rock bottom earlier this season, they definitely hit it in Seattle. Despite the fact that they were going up against one of the worst defenses in the NFL, the Jaguars simply couldn't move the ball on offense. It was an embarrassing performance for a team that had two weeks to prepare since they went into this game coming off a bye. 
Geno Smith started this game with 14 straight completions and things only got better from there for the Seahawks. The Seahawks QB had the most accurate game of his career as he completed 20 of 24 passes for 195 yards and two touchdowns. One reason Smith was so successful is because Tyler Lockett caught nearly every pass thrown his way. Lockett ran circles around the Jaguars' secondary, catching 12 passes for 142 yards. The Seahawks' defense, which was on pace to give up more yards than any other team in NFL history, surrendered just one touchdown and that didn't come until garbage time. The Seahawks' defense also stopped the Jags three times on fourth down. The win is exactly what the Seahawks needed just before their bye, especially since they could have Russell Wilson on the field for their next game in Week 10. 

Denver 17-10 over Washington

In a game where Washington only punted one time, the Football Team lost because they kept shooting themselves in the foot. Washington got inside of Denver's 20-yard line a total of two times on Sunday, but came away with zero points. One drive ended on a failed fourth-and-1 while the other ended with a Taylor Heinicke interception. Washington also had two field goals blocked and those two blocks led to 10 points for the Broncos. Washington's defense actually played pretty well, but the offense and special teams were so bad that it didn't matter. 
The Broncos' offense did everything to give this away, but the defense saved the day. After Washington recovered a Melvin Gordon fumble at Denver's 24-yard line with under 30 seconds left, the Football Team had a chance to tie things up, but Denver's defense shut down Taylor Heinicke. It was fitting end since the Broncos defense dominated nearly the entire game. The Broncos sacked Heinicke five times, they forced two turnovers and they stopped Washington four different times on fourth down. The special teams also made a huge difference with two blocked field goals. 

New England 27-24 over L.A. Chargers

It was a gutsy win by the Patriots on the road as they were able to come up with a number of clutch plays. The main one was a pick-six by Adrian Phillips off Justin Herbert in the fourth quarter that allowed New England to jump to a seven-point lead. After that, New England pass catchers displayed savvy clock management by staying inbounds on a 14-play drive that chewed up nearly seven minutes of clock and edged them out by two scores with a field goal with just over three minutes left in the game. It wasn't all good for the Patriots, however, and why they are not in the "A" range. There were a handful of questionable decisions by Josh McDaniels, which included two passes from the 1-yard line early in the second quarter that forced a turnover on downs. Two holding penalties by the offensive line also negated massive runs by Damien Harris, including a touchdown.
One of the biggest areas where the Chargers struggled on Sunday was on third down. They converted just four of their 12 opportunities on the afternoon and that helped New England jump out to roughly a 10-minute advantage in time of possession. Of course, turnovers were killer for L.A. as well and each results in points going up on the board for the Patriots. Herbert's first interception was followed up with a five-play drive by New England that brought the Patriots within one point prior to halftime and the second was a dagger pick-six by Adrian Phillips that put the Chargers in a seven-point hole in the fourth quarter.

Patriots-Chargers grades by Tyler Sullivan (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

New Orleans 36-27 over Tampa Bay

The Saints just seem to have Tom Brady's number, the one team that gets him off his spot and makes him look uncomfortable throughout the game. Brady still threw for 375 yards and four touchdowns, but also threw two interceptions and lost a fumble for the first time in six weeks. Three turnovers and 11 penalties doomed Tampa Bay, as a few roughing the passer and defensive holding calls extended some drives and led to New Orleans points. The Buccaneers' stout run defense allowed 152 yards on the ground and they only had 72 on offense -- a problem that needs to be corrected come the second half of the year. No reason to panic in Tampa yet.
What else could you possibly give the Saints? Sean Payton and this coaching staff just beat the defending Super Bowl champions with a third-string quarterback, a leading receiver that got called up from the practice squad Saturday, and a tight end that had one catch in his NFL career (had three in Sunday's win). That team found a way to put up 29 offensive points against a Tampa Bay defense that gets after the quarterback and was ranked first in the NFL in stopping the run. The Saints' defense played a major role in the victory, sealing the win with a interception return for the touchdown once New Orleans took the lead in the final two minutes -- one of three turnovers they forced in the game. The Saints are alive and cooking in the NFC South race. Hard to believe this is the same team that lost to the Giants

Buccaneers-Saints grades by Jeff Kerr (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Dallas 20-16 over Minnesota

If you win a road game with your backup quarterback, you get an "A". No further questions.
If you lose a home game to the opposing team's backup quarterback, you get an "F". Especially if you do it the way the Vikings did, playing conservatively and basically allowing the Cowboys to walk into their stadium and steal a win with Cooper Rush under center. Horrendous loss.

Cowboys-Vikings grades by Jared Dubin (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

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